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CoreyArtE
07-09-2005, 09:15 PM
I desperatly want to learn how to paint like the old masters, I see a few books, but i know theres gotta be something online for how to paint like the old masters without paying anything, because cash isnt really on top right now. Any clues?

Maidith
07-09-2005, 09:21 PM
The stills for painting different subjects and styles are the same. in the first place, you need to learn composition, colors, anatomy... etc. - no matter if you want to paint like Raphael or Royo. There is no instruction or book how to draw specifically in the old master's style. You can look at their paintings, though, a great collection of them can be found at www.artrenewal.org

:)

CoreyArtE
07-09-2005, 09:39 PM
I'm actually more concerned about their color choices, more than I am about anything else. Like how do they understand what color to choose for a shadow or a highlight across the skin or cloth. Things like that. See artist never really talk about the little things like that, that mean so much in the over all result. I'm starting college in 2 days, I hope my classes will help me undersatnd more about the old masters color choice.

Lunatique
07-10-2005, 04:29 AM
The only way to get there is to study all the art fundamentals like color theory, values, edges, composition, anatomy. They all work together hand in hand. You simply have to put in the time, and research good references and learning materials. I've only really started to get a grasp on advanced color theory in the last few years, although I had already been working as a fulltime professional artist for over 10 years before that. It's an ongoing process, and it will last for as long as you live. By the time you die, you'll most likely still feel like there's so much you don't understand.

Look at the "Art Theory & Tutorials" sticky thread in this forum. Lots of great stuff.

dbclemons
07-10-2005, 03:01 PM
"When you can take the pebble from my hand, you will be ready to leave." They're not called masters for nutin'.

The artrenewal.com site has a good start of resources online. You've got a long road ahead of you.

-DBC

Chud
07-10-2005, 05:38 PM
If you are going to college, then there'll be a library. There'll be at least one book in the Art History section . Find out what country and period of time you relate to most and see if there's a book specifically covering that type of painting. Most importantly, if you are close to a museum, use your student status to get in at a reduced rate. Paintings seen in real life reveal far more than the reproductions you see in books and especially paintings seen on a computer screen. A sculpture course is always important as it gets you thinking in three dimensions, and you become more sensitive to light and shadow. If you can aquire a good quality print of an "old master" painting, sometimes it's a good exercise to paint a copy of it, trying to match the form and colour as closely as possible. Start with a simple one. Still lives of objects are also useful exercises .

CoreyArtE
07-10-2005, 06:12 PM
Yes, actually I've been doing some intense studying into some of the old masters color schemes. Especially dealing with the values of warm and hot colors. I've made color notes, and make quick sketches from one of their works as you guys mentioned. I'm slowly starting to understand their color choices more and more. I noticed my 2 favorite artist Linda, and Jose, studied the great masters, which lead me onto the same path. And yes, I do have a long way to go, I just wish I could see with my eyes the things that the professional artist can see that i cannot. In due time....in due time...

DimensionalPunk
07-10-2005, 09:11 PM
Start by recreating some of their paintings, but don't just paint the same thing they painted, match every stroke and color mixture. You'll be amazed at what you can learn.

CoreyArtE
07-10-2005, 10:38 PM
Start by recreating some of their paintings, but don't just paint the same thing they painted, match every stroke and color mixture. You'll be amazed at what you can learn.

Interesting...So should I use the color picker or just eye it? So far i've just been eyeing it really.

DimensionalPunk
07-10-2005, 11:08 PM
Interesting...So should I use the color picker or just eye it? So far i've just been eyeing it really.

That's a good question. I'm working on a 3D version of an oil painting right now and I'm basically going to make the colors from the lighting and textures. Aside from that the only other covers I've done are some Degas I did with charcoal. In your case doing it without the eyedrop tool would help you learn how to mix colors but then again using it would help you understand what is actually in there. Hmmm... I would use the eyedrop tool to take a look at what colors make up each stroke and try to recreate the stroke yourself.

PerfectBlue
07-11-2005, 06:52 AM
Something like this is best taught in person by a skilled traditional painter. But if you want to talk to painters who pretty much specialize in traditional methods online, go check out www.wetcanvas.com. I post there every once in a blue moon for tips and tricks with traditional methods, its a great community. :)

Clanger
07-11-2005, 09:47 AM
The best tutorials here are payed for but there's still some good freebee ones as well.
http://www.artpapa.com/

groutcho
07-12-2005, 10:53 AM
Since the brain correct colors so that a white wall lit by blue light will still appear white, It may be a good idea to use the color picker, since it doesn't correct anything, and compare with what your eyes believe. It's amazing when you look at shaded surfaces (blue) and sun lit surfaces (yellow). They seem just greyscale until you just focus on each color separately and compare with true greyscale colors.

- Groutcho

RKurczewski
07-12-2005, 11:55 PM
If you will take a look at masters of painting before- say- XIX c., their way of working with colours is in huge part determined by technique- choice of base, materials for sketch, first contour work, all layers of paints and varnishes. Unfortunately it means that copying some of the effects is close to impossible- to achieve effect particles of colour imbued in glossy surface Durer used several (sometimes 20 and more) layers of paint, often of different colour. It can't be copied in any other way then doing the same - that's also a reason why photoses will never fully represent a work of art of old master- to understand their skills you have to see it with your own eyes.

Clanger
07-13-2005, 12:18 AM
I've had a go at doing some oil paintings in the Dutch masters style. The idea being to paint the picture several times with thin layers of paint. First in sepia then black and white finally the colour top layers. At first this seams like a waste of time but show the painting in good light and the under painting sort of glows a little. I understand this effect improves with age.
It's especially effective when painting skin as it's similar to the subsurface scattering of real skin.
I can't see anyway of duplicating this effect on screen or in print though, maybe one day?

CoreyArtE
07-13-2005, 01:09 AM
If you will take a look at masters of painting before- say- XIX c., their way of working with colours is in huge part determined by technique- choice of base, materials for sketch, first contour work, all layers of paints and varnishes. Unfortunately it means that copying some of the effects is close to impossible- to achieve effect particles of colour imbued in glossy surface Durer used several (sometimes 20 and more) layers of paint, often of different colour. It can't be copied in any other way then doing the same - that's also a reason why photoses will never fully represent a work of art of old master- to understand their skills you have to see it with your own eyes.

Thank you Rk, you make an interesting point as do the rest of you. But I am more interested in WHY they choose whatever color they choose instead of HOW. I might not have been as clear as I thought, but as I said before, most artist never really talk about why they decided to choose a particular green for shading the nose while using dark red shades around the eyes. Or how saturated the shadows should be or how unsaturated. You know, that sort of thing. Honestly, the best artist here in my opinion, as well as any artist period, are those with the traditional background who understand the process and reasoning of choosing just the right color in just the right spot.

See, I wonder, does it all deal with the correct tone or shading; or does it really even matter what color you use for tone or shading, as long as you shade it correctly with any color regardless? I think i'm not making myself very clear, but as mentioned earlier by DimensionalPunkmy, my best bet into understand the color method is to attempt a duplication. So far in my studies I've discovered that William Bouguereau used a touch of red around just about every highlight of skin, but I still have alot to go before completly understanding his color reasoning!

Crazzy Legs
07-13-2005, 04:52 AM
I'm actually more concerned about their color choices, more than I am about anything else. Like how do they understand what color to choose for a shadow or a highlight across the skin or cloth. Things like that. See artist never really talk about the little things like that, that mean so much in the over all result. I'm starting college in 2 days, I hope my classes will help me undersatnd more about the old masters color choice.

Some of the people here maybe (I think thats partly because, some people don't think we want to get into the traditional understandings of design), but not when you hang out with painters, or other trained artists that know what they are talking about. Chances are, you won't find many people on this site talking about what color to use as the shadow on the the skin, since most people let the rendering engine take care of that based on the shaders and the lights. However, the more advanced shaders you find out there, like subSurface scattering, specificly for the skin, has a lot of thought about the shadows behind it.

Lunatique
07-13-2005, 05:39 AM
To understand their color choices, you have to look beyond skin deep. For example, areas on the body where the skin is stretched tighter (breasts, buttocks) will be paler. Areas with cartilage (ears, wings of the nose) will be very warm (orange) when is backlit because it's semi-transparent. When flushed, the cheeks and the chest will be rosy. Fair skin will show the blue/green of the veins more than darker skins, so you'll see cooler skin tone on fair skin. Areas exposed to the sun more often will be darker. Wrinkled skin that are compressed (knee, elbow, knuckle joings..etc) will be darker.

The environment reflects color onto objects (and vice versa). That in itself can create a lot of complexities in color variation. The light sources themselves will alter how colors are perceived. If you have a scene where there's an indoor lamp (orange/yellow warm light), and outdoor sky light through the windows (bluish cool light), there will be an interesting mix of both in that scene. And lets say the floor of that room is filled with green plants--the green from the leaves will be bouncing greenish tint to the subjects too. And lets say one of the windows is stained glass with multiple colors--oooh boy, you see how complicated things can get?

RKurczewski
07-13-2005, 01:00 PM
Fortunately for this approach you will find a lot of resources- most of great artists were writing their own theoretic dissertations. Just as example- gothic imprimatura was almost always black ( charcoal from cherry seeds for making this particular paint, with lights from lead white) BUT venetians used greenish backgrounds rather then pure white and with using translucient paints it influenced entire palette from the very begining. Another thing- using green verdacio (underpaiting layer) for flesh which became a must in baroque art and gave a skin more realistic shading... Of course some of this techniques vere just regional traditions but when you know them it's much easier to understand why and how certaing things were done this or that way. The danger of such approach was using manuals for everything and loosing contact with nature...

dbclemons
07-13-2005, 01:00 PM
Choice of color is part of the mix, but how you handle them is just as important, CoryArtE, as you've guessed. There's a control of harmony of color families that is involoved. I would suggest looking at artists who use color at a very saturated level, like Fragonard or Turner, or Mannerists like Pontormo. Open-air painters let atmosphere dictate their palette as opposed to the studio look of many previous old masters. Consider mosaics also where the art is made by colored stones chips, or illustrated manuscripts which were very influential to artitsts in those days.

-David

nebezial
07-14-2005, 11:48 PM
my advice would be this, give urself the time to experiment draw something in grayscale and then drop some colours using colour mode and hard light mode, it is a great way to play around and develop the awareness about the colours. also i need to know what program u r using cause u gonna need a blender

CoreyArtE
07-15-2005, 12:13 AM
my advice would be this, give urself the time to experiment draw something in grayscale and then drop some colours using colour mode and hard light mode, it is a great way to play around and develop the awareness about the colours. also i need to know what program u r using cause u gonna need a blender

Hey Nebezial, I am a fan of your work. I remember following your work in the master and servant challenge. Anyway, I used to use painter and then do final details in photoshop. Now I simply use just photoshop, studying the styles of jose http://www.nibbledpencil.com/ and linda http://www.furiae.com (http://www.furiae.com/) , my 2 favorite artist; and ofcourse the old masters that taught us all what art truely can be. its strange because when using reference I can make something look good , sometimes photorealistic, but i'm not learning really about the colors i'm seeing. I want to learn to break away from reference.

I tried the greyscale method before, and i've gotten some great results but i'm not too into that method anymore. my avatar is an example of an image first done in grayscale.

John Keates
07-15-2005, 12:34 AM
The colours that the old masters used were largely determined by what pigments they could get their hands on and what they symbolised. There was a lot of alchamy in it.

I think it is better to be inspired by old masters by thinking what they achieved rather than to paint exactly like them. If they were alive today, would they paint in the same way (even forgetting computers and such - paint technology and things have come a long way).

Oh yeah, glazing not only helps you achieve othewise impossible colours but it can be a real time saver for some things once you know what you are doing.

If you are going to paint in oils then I strongly recommend good paint and canvas. I use Old holland paint on fine portrait canvas. You will baulk at the prices but it is a false economy to use poor materials.

Nebbiestar
07-15-2005, 12:48 AM
Phaidon publishes several books about artists, I have one on Waterhouse and one on Rossetti. The books really go indepth on the artist's motivations behind their works, and even include preliminary sketches/studies and compare/contrast the artists with other artists throughout history. I highly recommend their books! www.phaidon.com (http://www.phaidon.com)

groutcho
07-15-2005, 03:49 AM
It's sad they don't have any on Bouguerau. Anyway they have a book on Alma - Tadema :applause: I want it :bounce: . Thanks for the discovery

- Groutcho

Nebbiestar
07-16-2005, 03:09 AM
Glad to be of help. :)

Lunatique
07-16-2005, 04:28 AM
It's sad they don't have any on Bouguerau. Anyway they have a book on Alma - Tadema :applause: I want it :bounce: . Thanks for the discovery

- Groutcho

Of course they do. I've had my Bouguereau monograph for over 10 years now. It might still be in print, or you can get it second hand. Try online bookstores. I think the artrenewal.org people are putting together a huge Bouguereau book too.

dbclemons
07-16-2005, 02:26 PM
I've got a soft bound book "Bouguereau" by Fronia Wissman that's not bad. The reproductions are a bit matte, but still worth having. The text tends to dwell on the subject matter more than his craft which is disappointing.

-David

groutcho
07-16-2005, 03:34 PM
Of course they do. I've had my Bouguereau monograph for over 10 years now. It might still be in print, or you can get it second hand. Try online bookstores. I think the artrenewal.org people are putting together a huge Bouguereau book too.

You speak about Phaidon editions ? I didn't find anything on bouguereau on their website, and on amazon, there is only the book that dbclemons spoke about. Just one book ? For such an artist ?

- Groutcho

Lunatique
07-17-2005, 05:16 AM
You speak about Phaidon editions ? I didn't find anything on bouguereau on their website, and on amazon, there is only the book that dbclemons spoke about. Just one book ? For such an artist ?

- Groutcho

Mine is the Wissman one. There was another monograph before that, but it was decades ago I think, and long out of print. Like I said, go to artrenewal.org to find out about the huge Bouguereau book they're working on. Also, while you're there, read about their articles about Bouguereau, and you'll understand why there aren't a lot of material published on him. He was heavily criticized and hated in the past century.

groutcho
07-17-2005, 11:49 AM
I've recently discovered Bouguereau thanks to one of your sticky threads. And I've read almost the entire biography on him, on ARC. very interesting. I fell in love with this man who painted so much masterpieces. The thing that amazed me is this quote :

William Bouguereau is unquestionably one of history's greatest artistic geniuses.

and this one

[...]and it was he who was arguably the greatest painter of the human figure in all of art history

I've checked a book about art history and Bouguereau just appear in a little square, with just one picture of a painting. The text said that Bouguereau wanted to reach Raphael's skills and seeked the greates perfection, and that he was hostile to innovation... That's all the author had written about such a genius. And it seemed that he was slighlty pejorative ("hostile to innovation"). How sad it is that so many paintings remained in backyards, considered as craps by some modernists, and only rediscovered recently ! I wish I knew Bouguereau earlier.

- Groutcho

dbclemons
07-17-2005, 02:39 PM
Yeah, well, one person's "genius" is another person's "hack." I tend to take all the celebratory compliments of any artist with some scepticism, but I have no problem enjoying Bouguereau's achievements; although, some of the nymph paintings are a bit much. His Salon peers and other academists of that time have not suffered well in recent art history criticisms. I suppose there's still some fall-out from a Modernist reaction to his subject matter. During his time and culture he was quite celebrated and well-off. It's this aspect that the Wissman book describes. He's not alone in this realtive obscurity. There are many others of his contemporaries that have gotten passed over. The sad part is in wondering how many other hidden treasures there are out there. Support your local art museum!

-David

groutcho
07-17-2005, 02:58 PM
There are objective evidence. one may not like Bouguereau's work, nor the subject of his paintings, but hell, one must be blind not to see the skill of the man, the talent in making paint become real. For sure, there must be many other paintings waiting in attics, covered with spiderwebs and devoured by cockroaches... Sometimes I imagine myself being one of the few survivors of a world war, and I plan to gather some art works for the preservation of art legacy. How would I be considered if I just gathered what I like and tossed every painting that doesn't fit my tastes ? For sure, many masterpieces could be lost, just because someone don't love them... Everyone in France knew about Bouguereau's work in the beginning XXth century ( he died in 1905), but just because modernists didn't like him, they just considered it was craps. Shouldn't it be some kind of objectivity to avoid losses ?
I always thought art was subjective and objective, and I blame my former art teacher to despise those painters and keep on promoting contemporary artists, as if they were the only ones.

- Groutcho

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